Return of Majid

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Despite appeals the most of the newly recruited militants decided to put fight instead of returning home and got killed. Though police claimed that dozens of youths had joined militancy returned or surrendered, however most of the newly recruited militants are getting killed in daily encounters bring pain and miseries to their families.


On November 10, 20 year old youth Majid Arshid Khan who was known to everyone in south Kashmir’s Anantnag town as an ace football player and volunteer who worked with a voluntary organization.

Majid who used to spend most of his time either in play field or helping people through his local NGO joining Lashkar surprised everybody, including his old age parents. Majid wearing pheran and holding AK 47 announced his joining militancy on the face book, like other local militants.

Neither his parents nor his friends could bear his separation and video in which his parents were seen crying has gone viral. Even his friends asked him through social networking sites to return to home, especially for sake of his parents.

Even police also made it clear to his parents that incase Majid decides to return he won’t be harmed. Finally after remaining with the militants for seven days, Majid called his parents on Friday and asked them he want to return home and then he returned. Majid is still in police custody, the police and army had made it clear that no charges would be pressed against him and he will be allowed to join mainstream without any trouble.

On its part, Lashkar –e- Toiba also made it clear that Majid was allowed to return to his home on the request of his mother. From last one year, since Hizbul Mujahideen militant, Burhan Wani was killed around 100 local youth had joined militancy most of these youths announced joining of militancy on the face book. Since January more than 170 militants were killed in different encounters and among them 80 youths were local.

Despite appeals the most of the newly recruited militants decided to put fight instead of returning home and got killed. Though police claimed that dozens of youths had joined militancy returned or surrendered, however most of the newly recruited militants are getting killed in daily encounters bring pain and miseries to their families.

 Recently, J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti asked police officials that instead of killing local militants in the encounters they should be caught are arrested so that they can join the mainstream. Chief Minister even told the officers that those officers who will facilitate return of local boys will be rewarded.

Most of the youths killed in the encounters had no training and had joined militancy under extreme circumstances and efforts should be made to get them back, The killing of youths in encounters instead of ending the militancy paves way for more youths joining the militancy.

As per the latest figures, every month, despite killing of the militants eight to nine militants (locals) join the militant ranks and efforts should be made not only to stop this trend but also such environment should be created that no fresh youths are forced to take up gun.

Recently, Inspector General of Kashmir, Police Muneer Khan that government is planning to start a new surrender policy for those youths who have taken up arms. Khan also appealed youths that they should return the mainstream and they won’t be harmed. In the past also militants had surrendered or the militants who had crossed the LoC and got settled in Pakistan returned and joined the mainstream.

However, the promises that were made to them by the government about rehabilitation were never kept, forcing some of them again to join the militancy. The government should seriously think over this issue and tackle it seriously, the killing of youth is no solution, instead it only creates wedge and annoys large section of population.

Taking cue from the return of young footballer, the government should try to get as many youths back as they could only for the sake of parents and families of the young boys,  As per the official records majority of those who joined militancy were teenage boys and families could play a pivotal role in saving their lives.

Also there have been complaints that atrocity by police and army forced many youths to pick up guns or many former militants after frequent police raids had no opition but to join militant ranks.

The government should constitute special team to look into these cases and stop these types of incidents. How long could we keep losing young boys who could be utilized for better future?

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